Stress is not good for us. Stress can lead to multiple debilitating symptoms, including headaches, muscle tension, insomnia, irritability and lowered immunity. Chronic stress increases oxidisation and inflammation in your body, which can lead to increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
Here are 5 effective ways to manage stress in a day to day setting:
1) Take a Breaths
Deep abdominal breathing stimulates parasympathetic (opposite to fight and flight) nerve, giving you a sense of relaxation. If you identify a stressful situation, step back, take a minute and practice deep abdominal breathing.
Focus all of your attention on your breath while you take a slow breath in through your nose, bulging your lower belly as you inhale and slowly exhale through your mouth.
2) Fresh air
Get our of your office, take some fresh air and go for a short walk. This helps you shift your awareness and focus on something other than what is causing your stress.
Burn off some steam. Exercise decreases stress hormones and increases endorphin production (the feel good chemical). It is well known that exercise is healthy for both your mind and body.
Our internal emotions are often projected onto our physical expression. Interestingly, it works both ways. Look up, stand straight and smile, and you will immediately notice a surge of positive emotion.
5) Think positive
Rather than unnecessarily ruminating over your problems, break the cycle and train your brain to think positive. Training your brain is similar to training your body (going to the gym)- it takes time. Imagine the emotions you would feel if everything worked out for you. Also try practicing positive affirmation.
I can do this.
I can let go.
I love the challenge.
I can win.
Try saying these phrases to yourself, whenever you can. Language is very powerful.
Need more help to manage your stress? Book an appointment with one of our experienced clinicians!